Techniques

Below you’ll find smart woodworking techniques including quick tips, advice for beginners and more advanced methods to improve your skills and allow you to get the most out of your workshop and tools. Whether you’re looking for traditional woodworking techniques using hand tools or power tools, finishing or sharpening advice, or just want to hone your woodworking basics, the advice below is from seasoned and trusted woodworkers and furniture makers working at the top of their field.

Dutchman to the Rescue: How I Patch Wood

Every so often I do something dumb. A few weeks ago I was drilling 1/4″ holes to peg the tenons for a table’s apron. I started with a brad point bit but switched to a Forstner after finding that the first bit had torn the grain at the edge of the...

From Design to CAD to CAM to CNC: Part One

3D Design and 3D Carving using Digital Tools I’ve been writing about Digital Woodworking and CNCs for a while now and when it comes to techniques, for the most part, I’ve kept the topics focused on introducing basic processes and concepts that are useful to woodworkers who are new to this...

Soap: Making a Clean Finish

This traditional finish from Denmark is simple, safe and tactile. by Christopher Schwarz from the October 2016 PWM When I tell fellow woodworkers and customers that I use soap as a finish on some of my tables and chairs, they think I’m joking. Then, when I pull out a Mason jar filled...

The Art of Making Dovetailed Drawers

Fine furniture calls for an elegant drawer. A master cabinetmaker shares his approach to design and fitting. by Mario Rodriguez pages 50-54 Issue #174 There are just a few things my partner at Philadelphia Furniture Workshops, Alan Turner, and I don’t see eye-to-eye on. But how to make a good drawer...

Video: How to Reduce Planer Snipe

Nearly every time that I approach the planer, I think to myself, how am I going to avoid snipe this time? Without fail, I end up with snipe at the leading or trailing edge at some point in the process to a varying degree. It has been rumored that some have totally...

Mushroom Your Drawbore Gaps

It’s a shame customers don’t know as much about woodworking as woodworkers. They run their hands over your work and if it’s smooth they think it’s good – whereas you know that’s just the temporary wax on top. It shows the customer nothing about the weeks you spent oiling it daily...

‘Chisel Use: An Easy Guide’

by Jim Stuard from the February 2001 issue Chisel Use: An easy guide to whether you should be pushing,paring or pounding your chisels, in any given situation. Back when I started as an apprentice cabinetmaker, a chisel was something to be beaten with a large hammer. That was before I learned...

Don’t Close Your Eyes to the Square

When people injure themselves in the shop, their first reaction is to grab the wound and refuse to look. Sadly, this is the same attitude many woodworkers take with the squareness of their components: They refuse to look and hope things will work out. While there are lots of areas of...